Study data published in the journal Gene Therapy describe the efficacy of a human hepatocyte growth factor (HGF)-based gene therapy named VM202 in the treatment of critical limb ischaemia, Science Daily reported.
"These positive results are exciting, and VM202 shows great promise for treating patients with this debilitating disease who often have limited therapeutic options," said study author Emerson C. Perin.
In the study, the researchers observed that treatment with high-dose VM202 completely healed ulcers in 62 percent of patients, compared to 11 percent of patients treated with placebo.
The researchers also found that 71 percent of patients in the high-dose VM202 group displayed improved tissue oxygenation, versus 33 percent of placebo-treated patients.
"We are looking forward to conducting a phase III trial to better understand the potential of this novel approach, especially in treating non-healing ulcers, which is a serious symptom that often leads to amputation because of the lack of medical therapies available," Perin stated.
The study was partially funded by ViroMed, which is developing VM202 for the treatment of ischaemic foot ulcers in patients with diabetes.